Spill on I-43 leaves cars covered in concrete slurry

By-product of ongoing grinding work leaked onto freeway, DOT says
Ozaukee Press staff

Several cars on I-43 made an unwelcome splash recently when they drove through a concrete slurry mix that inadvertently spilled onto the highway

“People’s cars were coated with a white concrete sludge” underneath, on the wheels and on their paint finishes, Ozaukee County Public Works Director John Edgren told the county Public Works Committee last week.

The slurry is a byproduct of diamond grinding as part of the I-43 reabilitation project.

  Water is used to cool blades that chew up old concrete in preparation for reconstruction.

“A vacuum sucks up the water into a truck. Some of the slurry ran onto the road during clean up,” said state Department of Transportation Regional Communication Manager Dan Sellers. “It’s something that rarely or ever happens.”

The incident occurred the night of Sept. 12. Sellers was unsure of exactly how many cars were affected but said it was fewer than a dozen.

Several owners of the cars had contacted officials about damage done to their car and there have been some insurance claims.

“If it dries, you can’t just take it to the car wash,” Edgren said.

Any liability will be borne by the contractor and not the county or the state, Sellers said.

“It’s something unfortunate that happened,” Seller said.

The I-43 project extends from Highway 32 to the Ozaukee-Sheboygan county border.

Closures and detours through Sunday are:

Southbound I-43 between Pebble Beach Road and Arrowhead Road will be closed Thursday from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m., on Friday from 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. and on Sunday from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. Vehicles will exit at Sauk Trail Road and follow Highway LL to Spring Street to Highway W to Highway 60 and back to I-43.

Southbound Highway 57 will exit at Highway W and follow it to Highway 60 and back to I-43.

Northbound I-43 between Arrowhead Road and Pebble Beach Road will be closed on Saturday night from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Vehicles will exit at Highway 60 and take it to Highway W, go north to Spring Street to Highway LL and follow it north to Sauk Trail Road and back to northbound I-43

Northbound I-43 traffic seeking Highway 57 should exit at Highway 60 and take it west to Highway W, following it north to Highway 57.

Northbound and southbound I-43 between Highway V and northern Ozaukee County line will have daytime and nighttime single lane closures throughout the week.

 Construction details for this project are available on the Southeast Region Project website at hprojects.511wi.gov/i43diamond.


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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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Port Washington, WI 53074
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